A CCTV camera in an Aldi supermarket in Australia captured dramatic footage of people making a mad rush for toilet paper as coronavirus fears spike.
The supermarket in question was located in the Sydney suburb of Guildford. It starts with a peaceful scene before the store opens. Once shoppers start streaming in, they quickly but calmly head for the toilet paper aisle.
By the time the clip ends, the aisles that were filled to the brim with toilet paper seconds earlier are now nearly empty.
Aldi had to institute measures limiting shoppers to one pack of toilet paper each so that there would be enough left over for other people. But as the video shows, people ignored the rule.
The low-cost supermarket also removed toilet paper from its Special Buys list just to take the pressure off the product.
A statement from the supermarket read: “Due to unexpected demand on certain products over the past week, our Emporia toilet paper and Handee Ultra paper towel Special Buys were made available in stores earlier than the intended on sale date (Wednesday, March 11).
“As a result, these Special Buys will only be available in limited Aldi stores. We apologize for any inconvenience caused.”
The past two weeks have seen a frantic scramble for toilet paper with people trying to stuff their carts with as many rolls as they physically could. Fears that the coronavirus could lead to a supply shortage sparked panic buying as people tried to stock up in the event they are told to self-quarantine for at least two weeks.
The scene at Guildford, while chaotic, was comparatively mild compared to what happened at a Woolworths supermarket during the weekend.
One onlooker shared a clip on Twitter that showed three women screaming at each other at a Woolies in Chullora, west Sydney before a staff member intervenes.
One of the women apparently took a toilet roll packet from the other two, triggering a fight.
One woman was heard saying: “I just want one pack.”
But the second woman, whose cart was apparently full of toilet rolls, responded: “No, not one pack.”
A male staff member then stepped in and said: “I need everyone to back off right now. You need to get off this trolley.”
A Woolworths spokesperson told 7 News: “We can confirm an incident involving customers at our Chullora store in Sydney.
“We will not tolerate violence of any kind from our customers in our stores and we are working with Police who are investigating the matter.”
While police confirmed that they were called to the scene, no arrests were made.
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